A couple years ago I discovered that there was a visa that would allow me to head to Australia for a year to live and work. The only requirements being that I had at least $5000 AUD in a bank account, a high school education and no criminal record. Since I had a trip to South Africa for the 2010 World Cup in the planning, I held off applying for the visa. I didn’t put too much more thought into it until I got back from South Africa. I figured 6 weeks abroad would ease my itch to travel, but alas, it didn’t. I wasn’t home a week and I was already exploring where I wanted to go next, so I looked into the visa process a little more thoroughly and decided to apply.
I arranged for the care of my dog Boo Radley for the duration of my trip, waited until my savings account was a little more padded and began the visa application process. Things I was under the impression I needed in order to complete my application:
1. A certified copy of my birth certificate
2. A certified copy of my current bank statement showing sufficient funds
3. 2 passport-sized photos of myself
4. Proof of Education
Once you had the above, you could apply online. After you completed the online app and paid, you would be issued a reference number. You then had to take that reference number and upload the above-referenced documents as attachments. Well the organized part of me had already affixed labels on each document with my name on it and what the document was. When I got a reference number to correspond to my online application, I added that label to each document as well. I think the whole process of printing out the labels, attaching them and scanning them took a grand total of 10 minutes. When I went to upload the documents, I was told I could no longer attach documents to my application, as it had “already been processed.”
What? How? I just hoped that someone with the genius of Homer Simpson had set up a wooden pecking bird arranged just right to hit the “Y” button for “Yes” somewhere.
After a minute or so of searching for how to find the status of my application, I found this:
“RE: Application for Subclass 462 – Work and Holiday (Temporary) (Class US) visa
This is to advise that you have been granted an Electronic Work and Holiday subclass 462 visa on 13 November 2010.”
It took less than 10 minutes for the Australian government to decide they wanted my money and my business. What got me wasn’t the quickness in their decision, but the fact that I had not submitted any supporting documents with my visa application. So I guess it was a waste of time and money on getting the passport photos taken…
So yes, I am now visa approved…
Note: A week or so later, I bought my plane ticket. I’m heading to Fiji first since it was cheaper to do a stop over there instead of going strait to Australia. That, and well Fiji in February sounds a lot better than Wisconsin in February…